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Each day a new survivor of gender-based violence enters the Dane County network of service providers only to discover that the process of finding the help they need within that network can be overwhelming and defeating. Dane County Multi-Agency Center (DaneMAC), a new local non-profit, is working to empower all survivors of gender-based violence in our community by making it easier for them to connect with the help they need, including improved access to trauma-informed, culturally-competent post-assault forensic health care. In an effort to extend this essential service to the community, today DaneMAC announced the expansion of their Mobile Forensic Nurse Program through a new partnership with Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin, which will offer forensic nurse exams at Planned Parenthood’s South Park Street location in Madison, Wisc. beginning in 2022.

DaneMAC empowers survivors of gender-based violence by providing a path to safety and hope through trauma-informed, coordinated, and collaborative services. The organization currently serves the University of Wisconsin-Madison campus with their Mobile Forensic Nurse Program. But for the general public, until now, there has been only one location available to access a forensic nurse exam in all of Dane County – the UnityPoint Health-Meriter Emergency Room. By partnering with health centers like Planned Parenthood, DaneMAC is working to fill this care gap. Beginning in January, 2022, patients of Planned Parenthood will be able to schedule a free forensic nurse exam with a DaneMAC nurse during regular business hours at Planned Parenthood’s location on 2222 S. Park St., Suite 210 in Madison.  

“DaneMAC is incredibly excited to partner with Planned Parenthood Wisconsin to bring this essential service to victims of gender-based violence to the Madison community,” said Kim Curran, nurse practitioner and DaneMAC co-founder. “Through this partnership and our shared vision with Planned Parenthood, we’re committed to making it as easy as possible for survivors in Dane County to access free, centralized, comprehensive post-assault health care and testing, and to provide a platform for continued support following the initial forensic exam.”

Through the expansion of DaneMAC’s Mobile Forensic Nurse Program, survivors of sexual violence will have the ability to schedule a time to speak with and/or be examined by a trained forensic nurse employed by DaneMAC's Mobile Forensic Nurse Unit. All DaneMAC nurses are fully certified by the International Association of Forensic Nurses (IAFN) to perform adult and adolescent forensic exams, and uphold DaneMAC’s core belief that survivors should have a control over their bodies and treatment, as well as care options that they are comfortable with throughout the forensic exam process.

“For nearly 90 years, the staff at Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin have been there for people during some of the most important and intimate moments of their lives,” said Tanya Atkinson, President and CEO of Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin. “Empowering patients with information and access to nonjudgmental and compassionate health care is at the core of our mission. Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin is proud to partner with DaneMAC to ensure patients who have been victims of sexual violence have access to the comprehensive care they need,” Atkinson concluded.

“Centralizing support enables the survivor to navigate the network of local support. When logistics are no longer a concern, we reduce the post-assault burden on them. We are honored to be able to partner with Planned Parenthood Wisconsin to do just that. We are so proud that DaneMAC’s forensic nurses will be offering our support to this critical community health care provider and, more importantly, to the patients they serve”, said Curran.  

About Dane County Multi-Agency Center (DaneMAC) 
Dane County Multi-Agency Center (DaneMAC) is a nonprofit organization which empowers survivors of interpersonal violence and abuse by providing a path to safety and hope through trauma-informed, coordinated, and collaborative services. Founded in 2018, DaneMAC has been working to provide streamlined, efficient, effective support for survivors of gender-based violence in the Dane County, Wisc. community. Its growing network of services and providers ensures a competent, respectful, comprehensive, and responsive experience for those it serves in order to better meet the diverse needs of all survivors of gender-based violence— no matter their background, age, income, sexual orientation, gender identity, or race. Learn more by contacting [email protected] or visiting danecenter.org.

About Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin 
Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin is a nonprofit health care provider serving 54,000 patients annually at 22 health centers. Planned Parenthood provides the full range of comprehensive reproductive health care including well woman exams, breast and cervical cancer screenings, STI testing and treatment and birth control. PPWI offers abortion care in Milwaukee, Madison and Sheboygan. Visit ppwi.org for more information. 

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